(Press Release) Well before the disastrous fire that destroyed the headquarters and extensive archives of the 45 year-old Msgr. Patrick Anthony Folk Research Centre on March 25th, planning had been underway for the 7th St. Lucia Studies Conference.
The Studies Conference will open on Tuesday June 19th with the Hon. Harold Simmons Memorial lecture delivered by St. Lucian Dr. Anthea Octave. The venue will be the Conference Room of the Cultural Development Foundation (CDF) at Barnard Hill and time is set for 7 pm.
The Simmons Memorial Lecture was revived at the last Conference in 2016 with the support of the Julian R. Hunte group of companies which continues its support of the key-note lecture.
On Wednesday 20th, papers will be delivered at the CDF Conference Room with registration at 8.30 and the programme goes on till 3 pm. From 7.00 pm, the Conference will move to the Pastoral Centre at Marisule for the concluding presentations.
This year’s edition of the Conference is jointly hosted by the Msgr. Patrick Anthony Folk Research Centre and the Cultural Development Foundation. Minister Fortuna Belrose has promised the full support of her ministry to the Studies Conference and the continuing work of the FRC.
The overall theme of the Studies Conference is “Popular Culture, Entrepreneurship and the Saint Lucian Ethic.” Speakers include Msgr. Patrick Anthony, Founding Director of the FRC, Embert Charles, one of the coordinators of this year’s meetings and the first Executive Director of the FRC, architect Mark Hennecart, UWI graduate students April Louis and Rhyesa Joseph, SALCC lecturer and St. Lucian writer Vladimir Lucien. Topics will range from the Queen’s Chain to calypso and society in St. Lucia; from traditional Koudmen to African religious systems of Ifa. Msgr. Anthony, in the final session, will present a paper entitled: “Dreams for my people: a cultural manifesto.”
In the light of the recent disaster which has thrown into sharp relief the preservation of national and cultural archives, a panel discussion has been organized titled “Cultural preservation, sustainability of livelihoods and identity.” Panelists invited include representatives of the St. Lucia National Trust, National Association of Librarians and Information Professionals, (NALIP), FRC and theNational Archives.
Persons interested in registering for the Studies Conference are invited to call the FRC at 4531477 or come to their temporary offices at the CDF, Barnard Hill.